By Jonathan Scerbo ’19
The 2018 MLB playoffs began in early October, with an excited and optimistic Yankees team and fanbase ready for the upcoming postseason. The Yankees were forced to play in the Wild Card, a one-game playoff with the Oakland Athletics, as a result of both teams not winning their respective divisions. This game was “filled to the brim” with tens of thousands of noisy, passionate fans, and their excitement could be sensed through the television screen.
The Yankees won the game and ended up in the division series rounds against their rivals, and eventual World Championships, the Boston Red Sox. A five game series commenced between the Yankees and Red Sox, and two of the (potentially) five games took place in the Bronx. The excitement was building prior to the series, since the two teams hadn’t met in the playoffs since 2004. That excitement would soon turn to distress; Boston won in 4 games, and even won the 2 games played at Yankee Stadium. Although the season turned out different than expected in the postseason, the season the Yankees had was nothing short of amazing.
2018 was a record-breaking year for the Yanks. This especially apparent regarding home runs. Living up to their moniker, the “Bronx Bombers” smashed 267 home runs, which was the most in Major League Baseball history. This record was not attributed to one individual; this record was an impressive showcase of how important and impressive the entire team was.
To showcase the team effort, the Yankees became the first team in MLB history to have hit 20 home runs from each spot in the lineup, from first through 9th. Usually, weaker players are “penciled in” towards the conclusion of a lineup, but this statistic demonstrates that they truly did not have a weak spot in that lineup. Contributions from rookies such as Miguel Andujar and Gleyber Torres were massive, with each totaling 27 home runs and 24 home runs, respectively. Speaking of Andujar, he eclipsed the Hall of Fame Yankee Joe DiMaggio regarding most doubles hit by a rookie in one season with 47. The team also won 100 games for the 20th time in franchise history, another MLB record.
While the Yankees could not win their record 28th World Series Championship, their season was nothing short of phenomenal. Their team is so young and talented that they will be a certain force in the Major Leagues for the next several years. The offseason is straight ahead, and the Yankees will be looking to add to their impressive repertoire of players, especially in the pitching department. 2018 may not have been the year for #28, but there is no doubt that this season will be remembered in Yankee lore as one of their most talented teams in club history, as well as the beginning of another potential dynasty.